Adam Gratz

Truly achieving your #SparkGoals sometimes means knowing when to say no. Find out why Adam turned down a home office career so he could focus on becoming a store manager.

When Adam G., market manager, Market 171 in Eastern Long Island, N.Y., was growing up, his father was a big admirer of Sam Walton. So when Adam was hired to be an auditor at the Home Office right out of college, he was thrilled at the opportunity.

 

 

Soon Adam realized his ultimate goal was to become a regional vice president. And he also realized that achieving that goal would require that he spend time working in stores, where he’d really be able to directly see his work’s impact.

So Adam left his career at the Home Office—and said no to a promotion—to go to work in stores, eventually becoming a store manager.

 

 

“It’s a job where you have a lot of responsibility, but you can make a difference,” he says. “You’re helping our customers save money. You’re helping our associates be successful on a daily basis.”

 

 

Adam managed Store 5293 in Valley Stream, N.Y., one of the highest-volume Walmart stores in the nation. One of the keys to succeeding, he says, is listening to what other people have to say.

“Your associates can tell you what’s working and not working in the store. They have the best ideas, and you have to get their buy-in on what we need to change. When they’re engaged, they can move mountains for you.”

Adam aimed not just to have the highest sales, but also “to be the best store we can be.”

 

 

“That involves getting associates to understand profit and loss, understand the processes, develop business acumen,” he says. “We win not only when our sales increase, but also when our customer experience improves.”

 

 

Adam’s especially proud that many managers who’ve worked under him have been promoted. Three have gone on to become store managers, he adds.

 

 

As to his goal of becoming a regional VP, Adam has it broken down into steps, and he’s just taken a big one: becoming a market manager.

 

 

“It’s a matter of magnifying the success at Valley Stream. Part of that is team building, getting managers and associates to align in their goals, getting them to understand what the company is trying to accomplish, and giving them the guidance to get there.”

For more stories, advice, and inspiration, download your copy of the Spring issue of Walmart World here!

 
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